Feb 04

Be Your Own Valentine

This Valentine’s Day, be your own valentine and join us for a weekend of yoga and meditation to ignite love and passion from the inside out. In the Be Your Own Valentine – A Yoga and Meditation Virtual Retreat with Lopön Polly Ryan, MA, MFT and Gretchen Donovan, we will discover how to nourish self love and compassion, the seed from which boundless love for others grows. Join us on the February 12 – 13 weekend.

This Share the Dharma Initiative virtual retreat is offered free of charge through the generosity of sponsoring donors, as a gateway for students new to the dharma as well as offerings for our existing sangha. We hope to see you there!
In the spirit of giving, we encourage you to invite your friends and family to join this retreat, and please share this email with others!
In Mahayana Buddhism loving-kindness is an unconditional, inclusive love pervaded with wisdom. This love does not depend on whether one deserves it and is not restricted to our close kin or only those we like. Loving kindness includes all living beings and each of us has the potential for cultivating it. We must begin with loving ourselves because if we do not love ourselves, it is difficult to extend love to others.
In this retreat you will have the opportunity to:
  • Learn the foundational yet potent Buddhist meditation practice of Shamatha.
  • Experience accessible and nourishing yoga and movement practices designed to inspire a sense of groundedness, connection, clarity, strength, and courage.
  • Explore fundamental Buddhist teachings and meditations to cultivate a mind of love and compassion beginning with oneself and extending out to all beings.
  • Discover how to bring what you learn on this retreat into your everyday life and relationships.

In this video, Lopön Polly Ryan and Gretchen Donovan invite you into self love. To watch, click on the video below.


Helping Establish Equal Access

Tara Mandala is working to expand opportunities for access to Buddhist practices and teachings while offering an equity-informed fee structure when possible. With our Share the Dharma Initiative for select programs, we strive to make Dharma accessible to all while furthering the important conversations that must happen around current structures that inhibit equal access to underprivileged communities in our society. The Share the Dharma programs are free with the option to offer a donation to Tara Mandala. Participants may also secure longer access to recordings for a small fee.

The Share the Dharma Initiative was implemented with the aspiration to increase access to the Dharma for all people, especially those in difficult financial circumstances due to systemic oppression.

Programs within the Share the Dharma Initiative are offered free of charge through the generosity of sponsoring donors. Participants in this initiative will have an opportunity to make an optional donation to Tara Mandala to support its mission if they have the financial capacity to do so.

Learn more »


Listed times are the online portions of the retreat. All times are Mountain Time. To see how this daily schedule translates into your timezone, click here.

Saturday, February 12:

8:00am-9:30am MT: Opening Meditation, Orientation and Introductions, Practice
10:00am-12:00pm MT: Inspiring Teachings and Yoga Session
2:00pm-4:00pm MT: Inspiring Teachings and Yoga Session
4:30pm-5:30pm MT: Shamatha or Yoga/Movement Practice

Sunday, February 13:

8:00am-9:00am MT: Morning Shamatha Practice
9:30am-12:00pm MT: Inspiring Teachings and Yoga Session
12:30pm-2:00pm MT: Closing Session


Lopön Polly Ryan, MA, MFT

Lopön Polly Ryan, MA, MFT has been a devoted student of Lama Tsultrim Allione since 1992. She has also studied with B. Alan Wallace for over three decades. Under the tutelage of B. Alan Wallace, she has studied Shamatha, The Four Applications of Mindfulness, Seven Point Mind Training, The Four Immeasurables, Dzogchen, and other practices for over two decades. She has received teachings from many other Tibetan teachers including Kalachakra and Dzogchen teachings from H.H. the Dalai Lama in the late 1980’s. Polly is a certified Feeding Your Demons® Therapist and utilizes this process as a therapeutic life tool to assist clients in feeding rather than fighting their inner blocks to healing, growth and transformation. Polly opened her psychotherapy practice in 1986 in Truckee, CA, and Reno, NV. She leads the Tara Mandala Northern Sierra Sangha in downtown Truckee.

Gretchen Donovan

Gretchen is a longtime meditator and has been teaching yoga for over 20 years. She met Lama Tsultrim in 2015 and is currently part of Magyu: The Mother Lineage and The Apprentice Teacher Training Program at Tara Mandala. She carefully weaves Buddhist philosophy, subtle energies and precision of yoga and movement into her teachings. Her enthusiasm and commitment to helping others access growth and self awareness is both accessible and infectious. She is a Certified Feeding Your Demons Facilitator, a Vajrayana Buddhist Practitioner, and a mother of three adult children.

May we all enjoy this time together being our own Valentine!

~With Blessings,
Tara Mandala

Photo Credits: Share the Dharma (Joanne Brion)
gold geometric divider